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Five Medals [Wanyanoshonya]


Wanyanoshonya was an influential and powerful ogema (leader) among the Elkhart River Potawatomi. He led many great battles against warring tribes in the Great Lakes Region as well as secured peace and safety for his kinsmen through numerous treaties with France, Britain and America. As a warrior, Wanyanoshonya fought alongside famed Miami Mshikenikwe (Little Turtle) at the Battle of Fallen Timbers [1794] and led the siege of Fort Wayne [1812] with fellow Potawatomi Winamac the Younger. Despite his reputation as a fierce combatant, Five Medals served as a tribal delegate on various trips to Philadelphia and Washington, securing annuities for western Potawatomi villages and halting the Indiana whiskey trade. Attending the 1814 Treaty of Greenville, Wanyanoshonya along with Potawatomi leaders Metea and Topinabee, negotiated for peaceful resolutions to end the War of 1812 and its aftereffects.

Citations

Clifton, James A. 1998. The Prairie People: Continuity and Change in Potawatomi Indian Culture, 1665-1965
Edmunds, R. David. 1978. The Potawatomis: Keepers of the Fire
Kappler, Charles J. 1904. Indian Affairs: Laws and Treaties, II

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